Italy’s leading pasta producer De Cecco issues a 12.5 million euro bond maturing in 5 years. The bond is going to be the first investment of the new Sviluppo Export Fund, the private debt fund lanched last Spring by Italian Government-owned Sace Group, a leading provider of credit insurance and other financial products for companies (download here the press release).
Founded in 1886 in Fara San Martino (Chieti, Abruzzo) and operative in about 120 markets, De Cecco group produces pasta, extravergine olive oil, ready sauces, tomato derivatives and bakery. Proceeds from the bond issue will finance the international growth of the group in the most profitable markets such as United States, japan, United Kingdom, Germany, France and South East Asia.
The bond choice seems to be quite easier that an ipo a a mean to finance business development for De Cecco group ads in the recent past De Cecco tried to start procedures for a listing on the Italian Stock Exchange but the quite complicated governance made it impossibile: the group is actually owned by three different branches of the De Cecco family, MF-Milano FInanza writes today.
De Cecco reached 415 million euros in revenues in 2013 and 3,8 millions in net profit. The group has a consolidated relationship with Sace, as the latter guaranteed 16 million euros facility for acquisition of FIrst Pasta, the second player in the Russian market. Last yeat Sace also guaranteed a 10 million euros financing facility for acquisition of raw materials, above all wheat.
Sace is owned by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (Cdp) and will be privatized in the medium term. Sace launched its private debt fund last April, which is managed by Amundi sgr (Gruppo Credit Agricole) (see here a previous post by BeBeez),
The fund has a dry powder of 350 million euros: half of that is equity subscribed by Cdp while the rest is leverage, thanks to a financing by the European Investment Bank. The fund will invest in so bonds issued by Italian small and medium enterprises whose ordinary shares are not listed on a regulated stock exchange (socalled minibonds), Issuers will be chosen among healty SMEs with a good focus on export. Sace will also act as a financial guarantor of the issued bonds. So Sace will be investor in the fund, originator and guarantor of the bonds at one time.